Return of the Hood

We tend to think of our common, American past, as a series of moments of shared quaintness — pocked with unimaginable lightning strikes of violence that we’d rather soon forget — and so we have.

Where once we cringed at the white robe, and the Hitler salutes of those Anti-Americans who were landed, and living among us, we now have them — fresh faced, cauterized, and smelling of Pine-Sol and Mothballs — all around us, Heiling Hitler, but not the rest of us; seeking a clawback return to a time they never knew, and a place they never dwelled, and yet, they seek validation, and exclusive membership, in a grog of hate that bears the sealing wax impression, and the tacit approval, of our President of the United States of America.

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Call me a Nigger from the North

If you are easily offended by history, and the muscle memory mnemonics of words like — nigger — then you should not read the rest of this article. Over the many decades we’ve been publishing original work online, one word keeps popping back up for examination in various memes. Yes, that word is — “the N-word” — and we just call it like it is here, because that’s how Nigger has been used in the context of life beyond the Uncanny Valley.

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The Nebraska Abolitionist: When Slave Owners Won the Day

When I was in sixth grade in Nebraska — around the time Alex Haley’s ovaricRoots” novel was making its debut in the world conversation about America’s shameful treatment of slaves — our teacher, who was Lily-white born and bred and a staunch conservative from Oklahoma, decided to hold a “historical” debate with a bunch of 11-year-olds on the topic of abolition.

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How a Big City Teaches Multicultural Tolerance

As we tumble headlong into the dire possibility of a Trump Presidency, I am reminded of the salient, if silent, lesson some of us learn when moving from a small town to the urban core of a Big City: If you want to get along with everybody — like everyone anyway, even if you don’t — and never badmouth anybody, even if you want to.

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A Hopeless Whipsaw Cascade of Warping and Woofing: Managing Your Own Feels

In the Rise of the Millennials, feelings are given a whole new status above and beyond any shared fact or shred of righteous communal reality. Today, “feels” are peculiarly individualized, and non-universal, and they are now powerful cudgels used against the unwashed and unwitting others.

Instead of honoring every whim and ninny, we need to be in control of our own feelings, evaluate the reality surrounding them in context beyond the self, and then make a rational, logical, decision on what to do next based on perceptive thinking and not on implied — explicit or otherwise — slights and insights and invented microaggressions and their ilk.  We must not only keenly know the difference between purposeful cruelty and interpreted, environmental, intention, we must proactively act upon the right result.

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Is Paula Deen a Racist?

I have been following the saga of Paula Deen as she tries to answer cries against her obvious, inbred, Racism, and her multiplicity of firings from many companies as spokesmodel for their brands.  Do we want to punish Bigots and Racists by removing them from the public eye?  Or do we want them to be heard, so they can be forced into public recantations and corrections?  Slate magazine creates this interesting take on the problem of Paula Deen:

Paula Deen is America’s racist grandma, and we should treat her as such. Racist Grandma may be racist, but she’s also your grandma. You can’t just disown her.

And, contrary to what some might think, having a racist grandma isn’t entirely bad. No doubt there are many white families where racism is passed down generation to generation like some cancerous gene. But for others, seeing that gene and knowing you’re predisposed to it is a warning sign, a nagging reminder to take preventive measures for yourself. I say let’s push racist Grandma back to center stage and let her keep talking.

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Describing Skin Color in American Sign Language

Talking about Race in any situation — even in a university setting where teachers and students should feel safe to be blunt and congenial — can pack a certain, uncomfortable, stigma when bringing up the matter.

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